Wallmount sink faucet backsplash ideas plus tips for buying wallmount faucets

I think wallmount sink faucets are fantastic. There are more and more great designs coming out all the time. As condos and houses are getting more pricey, the bathrooms often get smaller. Which is not so great for us makeup and product junkies. We need all the countertop space we can get. That`s where wall faucets come in. (They are especially great for tiny powder rooms!) Lower down in the post I've provided a few tips I think you should keep in mind when choosing a wall faucet (you have to plan out in advance a bit more then when you buy a countertop style faucet). But first lets look at some backsplash styles!

I love the idea of having the wallmount faucet come right out of a mirror like in the photo above, I think it is super stylish, super chic and pretty cheap too! Of course over time you'll get some water damage to the mirror, but that adds character darling!

 The next style is as straight forward as you can get, nothing fancy, just the wall faucet coming out of the wall without any backsplash.This faucet is really beautiful and I love the idea of having the faucet handle on the counter, uber chic, and oh so practical since you won't get your wall wet (but try to find a faucet set up like this - good luck! They are hard to find and when you do they are priced for Royalty). Since it's such an ornate faucet and because the wall won't get wet from dripping hands reaching to turn off the water, it works. However, there is something to be said about taking the time to add a little more Oomph by creating a nice backsplash for your sink wall faucet. I picture a beautiful multi-coloured antique patterned tiles backsplash looking gorgeous with this sink. (tiles like the ones in this post would look nice I think.)

I find this next bathroom so light, airy and refreshing. 

Please click the "Click to see more" to see it (this is a really long
post so I decided to put a page break)

Hi! I'm glad you clicked to keep on reading!

Now look at this backsplash idea; the strip of bagette style light green glass
tiles creates a beautiful backdrop to the wallmount faucet.

Notice the amount of space left between the top of the faucet and the mirror. That's
an area you can play with. In this case, a little space looks nice, often though, I
like alot more backsplash showing above the faucet, but it depends on
the look of the bathroom and how tall you want your mirror to be.

Here`s a unique granite vanity countertop and backsplash. It looks like the stone
was broken into pieces then turned into a backsplash. Very original. This time there is
a few inches of backsplash above the faucet. I think those extra inches creates
a more dynamic looking backspash then if they had cut the top edge closer to
the faucet like in the previous photo. It really showcases the faucet nicely.

This bright green bathroom is probably too over the top for most people, however, we can get inspired by the faucet wall mount design. To add more storage space they built a nice little ledge behind the faucet, it doesn`t take up much more room and it adds alot of needed counter space. Good thinking design-pro! (I`ve seen that car rental commercial where they say  ``way to go business-pro``, way too many times! A business friend of mine brought some donuts the other day and offered me one, I said ``thanks business pro``, now we are all going around calling each other business pros for silly things, cracks me up (but you gotta wink and click your finger to make it look really professional ;)).

Now for some tips on selecting a wall mount faucet (you can skip over all the text in purple if you just want to see more backsplash ideas. I won't cry too much.)

Wall faucets are a bit more difficult to install then countertop faucets. If you didn't have a wall faucet in your bathroom before, your plumber will have to make some adjustments to your plumbing which will add to your installation bill. btw, all the components necessary to install the faucet should come with the faucet when you buy it. Double check with the salesperson, but all good quality faucets I've seen provide all the hardware you need (well except for the wood you need to screw the hardware on but that's a minor expense)(Oh, and your plumber should be able to reuse most of the plumbing that's already in your bathroom (if you are keeping your vanity in the same area as before). They'll have to do a few cuts and alterations and possibly buy some joint pieces but they can glue these to the old pipes. Don't let them scam you into buying all new pipes! And if you are doing the job yourself, it's really not that hard and the step by step installation instructions are usually found on the product site.

That said, there are a few things you need to keep in mind when selecting your sink wall faucet.

The first and most important is the length of the faucet itself. I'm talking about the spout the water comes out of. There are 2 common faucet lengths: 6 inches long and 9 inches long, but depending on the design of your faucet it can be any number of lengths. You absolutely need to write down this length. Double check that you wrote down the correct length - you want to write down the length of the part of the faucet that is exposed, not the part of the faucet you don't see. For example, in the green bathroom above, the faucet length I would write down would be from where the faucet meets the green wall to the end of the faucet where the water comes out. If you are in the store you can measure it yourself or even easier you can go on the product site and look up the product dimensions spec diagram and it should be shown on the diagram. (alot of these are badly done, so if it doesn't clearly show from which point to which point is included in the measurement, double check it by measuring it. Don't get overwhelmed by all these details, it's not hard, I just want to provide you will a few good pointers!)

So why do you need this measurement?
Because you will need to make sure that the length of your faucet is long enough for the backsplash style you want and for the sink you select. I can't stress this enough. If there is a sink you are dying to get, don't buy the faucet before you check that it works with that sink.Why is this important you ask? Because you want the water flow from the faucet to hit the center of the drain so that there is the least amount of water splashing back as possible. Remember, your wallmount faucet will typically be higher up (a nice height is 12 inches from the countertop) then a counter top mounted faucet so there could be more splash. You want your faucet to be like a gold medal olympic diver, in his sexy speedo, when he enters the water perfectly there is hardly any splash (at least that's what I'm looking at, maybe you were looking at something else and never noticed), so you want your faucet to drop the water into the center of the drain so there is as little splash as possible too. You can decide if you want to hang a gold medal around your faucet's neck or not.

Now that you have the faucet length you can see if it works with the sink and vanity set up you want. So to do this easily it's time to draw yourself a diagram. Trust me, it's the easiest way.

Get out a piece of paper and your measuring tape again and get ready to take a few measurements.

Here's an example I did for you:
 (if it's hard to read, click on it and it will expand, then press the Esc button (or the X in the top right hand corner of the pop up window) when you're done to return to the post):

I know I am not the best drawer (you should have seen the 1st version), so, to
recap my diagram:



the measurements you will need are:

1. measure from the center of the sink drain to the outer edge of the rim of the sink (if it's an undermount sink you won't have a rim)(or calculate the measurement from the sink spec diagram, but it's usually easier to do it yourself)
2. the little space of countertop between the sink outer rim edge and the backsplash. How to know how much space this is? Take your countertop width, subtract the amount of space you are leaving between the front of the sink and the front of the countertop then also subtract the width of the sink from that total and this is how much space you have left.
3. (and this one is so easy to forget to do, and it's usually a small amount so you think you don't need to, but even an inch can make a difference) the thickness of your backsplash. (ex. that funky granite backsplash 2 photos up is probably 3/4" thick so you'd add 3/4".)
4. forget about measuring it yourself and hire a designer! Not! You can do this Design Pro, wink, snap.

Add all these numbers up.
Compare this number to the length of your faucet.
Is it long enough?

What if you still screw up and bought too short a faucet? Well you can always reduce the space between your backsplash and sink, front edge space, change sinks or reduce the thickness of your backsplash. What if you've done all this and it is still off. Don't cry. It is not that huge a deal, you will just end up with a bit more water splashing on your counters because the water is not hitting the drain. Not that big a deal, but please don't use it as an excuse not to do the calculation ('cause if you buy a 6" faucet and you really need 9" then you will be sorry!)

With bathroom products often you can't return them or if you can there is a pretty steep restocking fee (it can be around 25-30% of the price, so that's a painful amount to pay for a mistake you could have avoided. At that restocking penalty you could have bought the more expensive faucet you wanted in the first place!)

Ok, this is getting super long and is putting me, and probably you to sleep (I really doubt anyone is sitting on the edge of their seat eating a bag of doritos reading this) so I will wrap up this how to section with just 2 more pointers.

Give alot of consideration to the depth of your sink  and the height of your sink. Like I said, wall faucets will splash more, so as much as I love the look of the super modern shallow sinks, they aren't as practical when it comes to water splashing or for soaking your bikini in, or speedo if you're a sexy european guy, for that matter (btw, if your water is splashing everywhere and it is driving you nuts, you can have your plumber reduce the water pressure. Your water flow won't be as nice but you won't be whiping up water either, so it can be worth it.) Look at all the sinks in these photos, what do they all have in common? They are deep!

You should also draw out a front view of your sink, faucet, backsplash and mirror placement with, yuck, you guessed it, MEASUREMENTS! If you choose a tall sink, your faucet is going to have to be higher up the wall, so then your mirror is going to be bumped up too. If you wanted the look of huge mirrors in your bathroom, you need to keep this in mind. There are alot of really pretty tall bowl sinks out there, that alot of countertop faucets are just to short to match up with so going with a wall mount faucet gives you more flexibility on sink height. However, you still want a sink that is not so tall that you feel like you are reaching down to pick up the soap and that you can't get a good look at your cute outfit in the mirror because the mirror has to be so high up to accommodate for having to put the faucet higher. Notice that most of the photos I featured show under mount sinks...

Ok, I lied one last thing. Remember I said 12 inches is a nice height for a wall mount faucet right? I hope you are saying, wait girl! It depends how tall your sink is to know if that measurement is good. Correct Design Pro, correct, wink and a double snap for you. Another thing I like to do too is, on installation day, stand in front of your vanity, put your counter top sink on there if possible (have someone hold it so it doesn't fall and break and you send me mean emails), walk up to the sink as if you are going to wash your hands, put your hands out at the height you feel comfortable. Measure that spot! Add a bit of space between that spot and the end of your faucet and that should be a great height (ok, you can only do this if you are tiling and don't mind running out for more tiles or don't have a backsplash, you can't really do this on installation day if you are having a big piece of marble, so if you're not too lazy set up a mock vanity with a dresser and a box or bowl if you are an intense perfectionist and want to be 100% sure of your height). I did this with a faucet,then read the instructions and the comfort height I had selected was the same height the manufacturer recommended. I'm average height, so I would have been fine with the manufacturers suggested height, but if you are taller or shorter, then doing your own comfort test can make a big difference to you. You should also test out your comfort height when choosing your sink height to counter top.

One teeny tiny last thing, I won't go into big detail though - if you are making a thicker backsplash, such as ones with shelves (like the green one above and an exotic one bellow) or thick stone, you might run into a problem where the backend of the faucet & handle are too short. I did a marble backsplash and the hardware was just long enough to fit through the marble to attach the handle, phewf! 

I think I've covered the most important things I wanted to. If there is anything you think should be added please leave notes in the comments to help out everyone else. If I wake up in a cold sweat one night remembering something I should have written, I will do another post on wall mount faucet installation tips.

Now lets get back to looking at pretty bathroom photos...

This wall mount faucet makes me think of Ikea. Love the two different colour handles.

Look how good wall mount faucets look with dual basin sinks. So pretty, and so much
more counter space is saved by placing the faucets on the wall. To see more washstand vanities, check out this post I did on them here.

I really like this next back splash design. I love the seamless look of the built in back splash of this modern troth sink. The rustic timber walls in this bathroom are really interesting to look at, it gives the bathroom a more masculine vibe, but if it were my bathroom, I`d rip out all that character and go with chic plain white walls to give this bathroom a spa like look and feel. Love, love, love this beautiful mirrored vanity and crema marfil troth sink and back splash combo. I can see it looking gorgeous in a luxury condo bathroom.

Here's a nice exotic backsplash with a huge backsplash ledge. It would
look spectacular at night lined with lite candles and scattered red flower petals.

Don't forget to think about the top edge of your back splash. Nobody said it has to be straight. You can make it curved, wavy, whatever you want. Make it
a show piece like this one.

Okidoki, I don't think I forgot anything I wanted to cover here. If I did though, I'll do another post (I have a bunch more wall mount faucet photos, but this post was getting way too long as it is!). Again, If you want to add any other useful tips in selecting a wall faucet, please leave them in the comments or anything else you'd like to say, such as how many run on sentences were in this post! Thanks!


Elaine Flanagan said...

This is great information on purchasing and installing wallmount faucets. Thank you. I originally bought single faucet but not enough counter space so decided to install wallmount. Before I made 2nd purchase decided to get as much info as possible.

mikky said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mikky said...

Hi Elaine,

I`m so happy you found the post useful! After I wrote it I wondered if anyone would ever read it, so to see that you read it and that it was helpful to you really made my weekend. Thanks so much for leaving me such a nice comment. Hope your bathroom turns out wonderfully and if you want to share photos of your progress and your final result please email me (mikky@todaloos.com) or leave a comment. It would be fun to see your bathroom, to see what wallmount faucet you end up going with and it would also be great to document your experience and show photos of bathroom in a post! Think about it, it would be fun.

Hope you're having a nice day.


Anonymous said...

This really is useful. Thank you.

mikky said...

Dear anonymous,
I'm happy you found it useful. Thanks so much for leaving a comment and letting me know. It put a big smile on my face.

Anonymous said...

Very useful information. Thank you! Is it ok not to have a backsplash with wall mount faucets and a vessel sink? I am going with a marble top. Would a 3 or 4" backsplash look right?

Anonymous said...

I have a problem not covered here but would appreciate your comment. Round bowl 40cm dia & tap choice mixer & spout on chrome wall mounted plate. Is the plate centred on the wall to the bowl or is the spout coming out to the centre of the bowl. Also if the drain is in the centre, the spout comes out half way across the bowl & can really get in the way of the small space. What to do?

mikky said...

Hi Anonymous,

Sorry I am only replying to your questions now. I hadn't checked the comments in a bit.

I have reread your question a few times and am not exactly sure if I understand your first option re the centering of the spout. I am guessing and think that you are asking if you center the spout to the middle of the sink or do you center it to the drain. (if I'm wrong please let me know!) I have seen it both ways, both with faucets that are wall mounted and for faucets that are on the counter top (with counter top ones I have even seen the faucet placed to one side of the sink,it can look quiet nice). So it depends aesthetically which you prefer. However, personally when we installed a wall mount faucet in our downstairs bathroom I made sure to choose a faucet length that hit as close to the drain as possible and centered it over the drain. The reason being when the water hits over the drain you have less water splashing up. If you really don't like how it looks over the drain and want to center it another way, then you can always reduce the water pressure, but you will still have a bit of splash.

For your second question, when you say it's getting in the way is this because the faucet is close to the rim of the bowl? To give you an idea of distance, if I measure from the tip where the water pours out of the faucet (ie. not the height of the faucet) to the height of the bowl I have, the height is 4 1/4". Now, the total height of my bowl is only 4", so it's not that tall a bowl. So if your bowl is very tall, you might put less space then I did. What you should do is, stand in front of your vanity where the sink will be installed, put an open shoe box or stack some books up to make the height of the bowl, put your hands out as if you were going to cup some water, see what feels right. Have someone hold the faucet over that spot see what feels comfortable. Place the spout nicely around that spot. We took our measurements, read the recommended height but in the end we used what we felt was right doing the above little drill. Put a piece of tape on the wall where you've determined is a good height for you and whoever lives with you (adults only, not kids heights, those will change) and then step back and take a look at how aesthetically it will look. That's what we did. Hope this helps!

If you need any other info or my comments aren't clear, don't be shy to reply back.

Thanks for your comment and please let me know how your installation goes!


mikky said...

Anonymous said...
Very useful information. Thank you! Is it ok not to...posted
January 18, 2015

Hello Anonymous, hope it's not to late to answer your question. I'm so sorry, I haven't been looking at my comments for a bit.

Yes, as far as I am aware - as I am not an expert, you don't have to have a backsplash with wall mount faucets. I have seen many that don't have a backsplash. That said, installing a wall mount faucet means cutting into your wall, so that means you will have to plaster the gyprock wall to repair it. If you've ever repaired a hole in a wall, you will know that to get the wall looking smooth and as perfect as it was originally is not easy. Putting the right amount of plaster and sanding just enough of it off to the right smoothness is really an art, believe me I have done alot of plastering and suck at it. Then you are going to have your lovely bright lighting over your sink so you can see yourself, so that is going to make any imperfection in your plastering job easier to see. However, if you have a backsplash that doesn't go behind your faucet but does cover your wall a bit, like the heights you mentioned, that will help to make any imperfections less noticeable. Also bear in mind that a backsplash protects your wall from getting wet when you go to turn off the tap with your wet hands. Personally I like the look of the backsplash going up past the faucet. However, if you do put a backsplash behind the faucet, you need to check that the backsplash is not too thick, that once you install the faucet and put everything back in place and put the backsplash in the backend is not to thick. Sorry am doing a bad job of putting into words this part. I'll give you an example, for our downstairs bathroom we put in a marble counter top like you are doing. Now with marble as you prob know you can have 2 diff thicknesses depending on the marble, the thickness are usually 1 1/4" and 3/4". So we went with the 3/4" marble, because if we had went with the 1 1/4" marble and used it for the backsplash, the faucet would not have fit thru given the overall length of the faucet (there is only so much space between where the backend where the mixer is and the front end where the spout and handle are so the wall and backsplash you are putting needs to all fit in that space) If you are using thin tiles made for the wall this is usually not a problem, you just need to do a little measuring when you are using a thicker material, it's not hard to figure out thought! (haven't read this post in awhile, so I hope I didn't cover this in it. maybe I should have reread it before answering you!)Yes, So don't let this deter you.I hope I haven't confused you.
ran out of space, see my next comment for answer to part 2 of your question.

mikky said...

Re the second part of your question:
Would a 3 or 4" backsplash look right?
Unfortunately, I can't give you a definitive answer for that. The reason is I can't see how tall your sink is, I don't know the overall look you are going for, what materials you are using for your backsplash (ex. are you using marble to match your countertop, plain tiles or tiles with a pattern, etc...) are you going for a contemporary look or modern or rustic,etc...), even if I had all that info I wouldn't feel right giving you an answer, because what you like and what I like might not be the same. So at the end of the day it really depends on your taste, what you think looks good, there is no right or wrong. The best thing for you to do is to look at the photos of backsplashes of various height, see what height you like. Personally, I know that I am not overly found of really short backsplashes, I find depending on the material to me they look dated and if the edge is flat you always notice the dust accumulating on it. Also, I was never a big fan of backsplashs that end just bellow the faucet.I always look at it thinking why didn't they just extend it a bit taller?That said I remember seeing it done in a fancy hotel with a rounded top edge (can't remember which) and said to myself look, it does look really good here, who would have thought! I've also seen some that were bellow the faucet and they put a wooden lip on to create a shelf. So all that to say, done right, keeping in mind the style of the bathroom, how it goes with the height of your vessel sink and the materials you use, anything can look good. Look at photos of your sink style, look at where it makes sense for you to have the backsplash stop in relation to it. Also, think about how hard it will be to reach the top of the backsplash to dust it off given the height of the sink. Also, if you do put the backsplash behind the faucet, how far above the faucet do you want the backsplash to continue? What do you want the top edge to be like? It can be any shape you want, thinkof bed headboards for example. Again look at photos. Personally, again, I like the backsplash to not end right after the faucet, I like there to be more backsplash, I find it looks richer and more modern (but again, I've seen nice shorter versions too). And how are you going to trim the top of the backsplash? Is the edge going to be cut straight, rounded, trimmed in metal, etc... Ask yourself what type of mirror you are going to install, if you are going to install a full wall mirror then you want to see if the height is good. Especially if you are going to hang a premade mirror how low does it need to go, that's going to affect how hight your backsplash can go up. Spend some time looking for photos of bathrooms with similar elements and styles to what you are going for. Please don't let this overwhelm you. If you still aren't sure and your vanity is in, take a piece of cardboard, fold it to your 3", 4" and other heights you are considering and see how it looks, put a box to represent the height of the sink. Even if you don't have the vanity installed yet, you can just take a measuring tape, measure out the height of the vanity plus the countertop tape this off or draw it on your wall in pencil, it will not show after anyways, draw in the height of your sink then try out different heights, you Could even prop up a table to try it out. I'm a very visual person, so I did these things and it helped me get the exact look I was going for.

Again sorry for the late reply. If you need any more detail please let me know. And don't worry, worst situation, if you hate the look of your backsplash you can always redo it.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this. I've been looking everywhere for guidelines on how to decide whether I need a 7" or 9" wall faucet and I haven't been able to find anything else anywhere as clear as this. 9" is the clear winner :)

mikky said...

So glad it was helpful to you and I appreciate you taking the time to let me know!

Good luck with your bathroom reno and all best.


Anonymous said...

Hello from Australia!
i just found this blog and have found the information very helpful!! Your diagram is fantastic, my question is when we buy the closest spout/faucet does it have to be under the total length required or over? If we cannot find one under is it ok if over? Example your image states that a 9 3/4 faucet is required but what happens if the closes faucet you can find is 11 and therefore longer than 9 3/4?

Thank you so much for having this page available.


mikky said...

Hi Jaque,

Sorry for the late reply! I haven't checked my emails in a bit with all the nice weather, enjoying the last bits of summer. So cool to see that you are reading my blog from Australia! Lucky you to live in such an amazing country!!

Ok, now to your questions:
"when we buy the closest spout/faucet does it have to be under the total length required or over?": once you've taken your measurements and found the sweetspot where the faucet falls over the drain then you know the best length for the faucet to be. chances are you won't find that exact length given that there are so many factors involved (the thickness of your backsplash, etc..as discussed in the post) so you want to go with the faucet that is closest to that. So the total length can either be under or over the sweetspot length, either will work, as long as it isn't so short or so long that it falls at the lip of the sink.

"Example your image states that a 9 3/4 faucet is required but what happens if the closes faucet you can find is 11 and therefore longer than 9 3/4?"

So if you found an 11" faucet you like and your sweet spot was 9 3/4, does the 11" faucet still fall nicely inside your sink, if so you are fine. I think a faucet that is a bit further out past your sink drain is better than a faucet that is much shorter than your sink drain. My kitchen sink faucet was installed incorrectly, the company that made my countertop drilled the hole into the caesarstone an inch further back for the faucet than it should be so the water falls between the drain and the back wall of the kitchen sink, it can be a real pain to wash pots as you are always getting water back onto the counter, so if you put a too short faucet in your bathroom then it can also be a pain when you are washing your hands or washing out your aussie bathing suits, you will splash water on the counter, so in my opinion a faucet that passes the drain, like your 11" is better than one that falls before the drain. btw, I am not a professional, so this is just my personal opinion from installing and using faucets that don't fall correctly.
Also, you should look at the sink you are choosing, is the sink the same depth throughout? For example, if your sink is the shape of a bowl where the deepest part is where the drain is and then the sides slope up if your faucet passes the drain will the water fall on a higher plane? So that means your water will splash more because it is hitting higher up. I think I am doing a horrible job explaining that, I hope you understand! Just look at where your faucet hits on the sink, if it is a troth style sink or one that is deep throughout then no problem, if there is more angle to the sides of your sink you might want to check where the faucet would fall and possibly choose a different sink. However if you love both the sink and faucet you can always adjust the water pressure or not put the water on full blast when you turn on the tap.

Just to reiterate, yes I think your 11" faucet will be great just as long as it falls nicely in your sink.

Congrats on getting a new bathroom and thanks for reading my blog and your comment. It is always wonderful to see that this is useful to someone.

All the best,